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Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness

General Location Maps Contacts Area Management Wilderness Laws Trip Planning Images

Area Management

The Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness is part of the 110 million acre National Wilderness Preservation System. This System of lands provides clean air, water, and habitat critical for rare and endangered plants and animals. In wilderness, you can enjoy challenging recreational activities like hiking, backpacking, climbing, kayaking, canoeing, rafting, horse packing, bird watching, stargazing, and extraordinary opportunities for solitude. You play an important role in helping to "secure for the American people of present and future generations the benefits of an enduring resource of wilderness" as called for by the Congress of the United States through the Wilderness Act of 1964. Please follow the requirements outlined below and use Leave No Trace techniques when visiting the Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness to ensure protection of this unique area.

A Resource Management Plan (RMP) for the McInnis Canyons NCA was written and approved in 2004. The primary focus of the Plan is to protect the natural resources and provide recreation oppportunities for the public, consistent with NCA values. The MCNCA RMP is available at

Group size througout the wilderness is limited to 12 people except in the lower canyons draining into the Colorado River where the group size limit is 25 people (within two miles of the river).

The Rattlesnake Arches vicinity is day-use only with camping available along the access roads into the area. At the present time, no permits are required for use of the Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness. Permits for use of the Colorado River (forming the northern boundary of the wilderness) will be required starting in 2012.

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